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The Woodworking Blogs Aggregator
This is a collection of all the different blogs I (try to) read. A whole bunch! If you have any comments or suggestions feel free to use the CONTACT page to get a hold of me. Thanks!
George Walker has written a fascinating piece for Issue Two that we’re calling ‘Dividing the Line: Assessing the Eye of Blue-Collar Geometers’. In this essay, George presents his own design research from a new perspective. By comparing two 18th century cabinetmaking cousins’ apron profiles to each other, George is able to reverse engineer their designer’s eye for us. At first, you think their aprons look similar enough but after he walks you through the layout process, you see how different they really are.This fascinating exercise will help you in your workshop by teaching you how to layout your own aprons or profiles. How do you capture your inner designer’s eye? How do make something that reflects not just general attractiveness but your own unique voice in the piece?
I’m so grateful that George is taking us back to the essential principals of design that we all missed out on as 21st century mostly self-taught woodworkers. (If you missed his piece in Issue One, you can pick that up here.) His research fulfills a critical role in the Mortise & Tenon vision.
Hang tight for Issue Two… November 1st is not far away!
Here’s a recap of Saturday and Sunday (days 2 &3) of Woodworking in America 2016. Saturday was a fun day of workshops and lectures. I watched a great talk by Caleb James on Danish Modern furniture. Chris Schwarz had a talk about Chairmanning and a talk about his Roman Workbenches. Roy Underhill demonstrated how to make a classic coffin. Mary May demonstrated how to carve volutes, C-Scrolls and other similarly projects. I also had some fun guarding Chris’ low Roman workbench as I helped Roy get it out to his van.
I got to see some more old friends, meet some new ones and meet several friends I knew from being online, but not in person. I got to meet Mike Flaim and had a brief interview with Dyami Plotke of MWA.
In the evening we had an event where we went Rhinegeist Brewery for some very good beer and BBQ followed by a tour of some of the massive underground brewing and beer storage tunnels that are under much of Cincinnati.
Click on any of the images below to click through the images as a slideshow. (if you are viewing this post in an email browser, please click on the post title above to view the post on the website itself)
If you’d like to see my photo recap of the first day of WIA 2016, please check out this earlier post here.
I had a great time at the event and hope to see many of you there next year.
Filed under: featured, Popular Woodworking Tagged: Cincinnati, Cincinnati Ohio, Covington KY, featured, Popular Woodworking, Popular Woodworking In America, WIA, WIA2016
Part 3 – Painting
This is the third post in a four-part series in which I show all the steps that I took to restore an English Stanley No. 4½ Jumbo Smoothing Plane. You can read the earlier posts here:
- Tool Restoration: Stanley No. 4½ – Part 1 – Tear Down and Cleaning
- Tool Restoration: Stanley No. 4½ – Part 2 – Fettling
I ended the previous post with the plane cleaned, fettled and ready for paint. As you can see, I didn’t completely strip the plane of its original japanning. What was there, was very well bonded to the metal and shouldn’t create any problems if painted over. I have done planes in the past that required sandblasting to strip the casting back to bare metal. I have also experimented with electrolysis to clean up significantly rusted planes. Considering the condition of this plane at the start, none of that is needed here.
However, I do want the new paint to stick to the plane. Any dirt, oils, or grease will make this difficult, so the first step is to degrease the casting. You could do this with degreaser soap and hot water in your utility sink, and I have done this in the past. The thing to keep in mind is that we are dealing with freshly sanded bare cast iron. It will rust very quickly. Using very hot water and thoroughly drying the plane immediately after removing it from the water helps. You can also use an air compressor to get any water out of the threaded holes.
In this case, I chose to spray down the casting with brake parts cleaner. You can also use caliper cleaner, or other degreaser sprays. I just used what I had on hand.
After degreasing I masked off all the little threaded holes. The paint is going to be applied quite heavily and I don’t want it getting in the threads. I tear off small pieces of masking tape and roll them into balls. I then shove the balls into the holes to seal them off from paint.
On the frog, I also cover the lateral adjuster arm and the threaded rod for the depth adjuster wheel.
At this point the project moves outdoors. On a nice warm dry day (preferably above 55°f), I set some cardboard on top of my trashcan. I move the trashcan around until the cardboard appears reasonably level, and place the plane on the cardboard. I then check things with a spirit level.
If I was just painting this would not be so important, but I’m trying to recreate the look of the black japanning that was originally on these planes. Japanning is much thicker than paint and plane bodies just don’t look right when done with just a thin/light coat of spray paint. I’m going to build up a lot of paint on this plane body, to the point where you can’t read the letters cast into the bed. If the plane is not level, the paint will run. This paint will shrink some as it dries, but it will shrink much more when I bake it in the oven.
With the plane level, I’m ready to start building up the paint. For paint, I use the Dupli-Color Gloss Black Ceramic Engine Enamel. This was another great recommendation from the RexMill site and one that has served me well. He recommends to use the hi-gloss for all the build-up coats and semi-gloss for the final coat. I have done this in the past, I agree that it does look better. This time, I only had the high-gloss paint on hand, so that it what I used. I probably should’ve driven to the auto parts store and spent the seven bucks on a can of semi-gloss for the final coat. It does look more like real japanning.
There is also a primer available in this paint line. You might remember that I used it when I restored a hand cranked grinder several posts ago. However, with plane refinishing, I sand the edges of the plane after the paint has cured and I don’t want to see a thin gray line of primer in between the metal body and the black “Japanning”.
I started with a light coat and gave it about 15 minutes to dry.
Since I’m doing this outside and under the trees, I covered it with an upturned box to prevent dust and dirt from settling into the wet paint.
For the frog, I found a bolt that would (sort of) fit the lever cap screw hole and hung it from a piece of copper wire.
I continued this process, adding another coat every 15 minutes or so, until I had built up a really thick coating. So thick that you could no longer see the “Made In England” text that was cast into the bed of the plane. The first time I did this, I was sure I had gone to far, but it needs it. After the paint dries for a day, and after baking, it will look just right.
After about an hour, the paint had tacked up enough to move it without the paint running. I moved it back inside and put it on the bench to let it dry for a day.
Even after a day, this paint isn’t really dry. The surface is, but you could still mark it with a fingernail if you pushed. Using a dental pick, I carefully removed all the masking tape.
I’ve written on this blog before about my method for baking on engine paint. Since I’m trying to be thorough in this series of posts, I will go over it again.
Once the paint is mostly dry (after about 24 hours) I bake the paint onto the parts. The paint that I’m using seems to get really hard and durable once baked
Before proceeding, either make sure your wife has an incredible amount of patience, has no sense of smell, or has gone out for the day. In short, this stinks up the house pretty badly. Here’s my baking schedule:
- Put the parts in a cold oven
- 170°F (the lowest my oven goes) for 30 minutes
- 200°F for 20 minutes
- 225°F for 20 minutes
- 250°F for 20 minutes
- 275°F for 20 minutes
- 300°F for at least 1 hour, sometimes I forget about it and leave it for three.
- Turn off the oven, but leave it closed and allow it to cool slowly overnight.
I do it this way, to avoid damaging any of the cast parts or inducing them to warp. Metal expands and contracts with changes in temperature and throwing the plane parts into a ripping hot oven seems like a bad idea to me. I raise the heat slowly, and then let it cool slowly. So far, I’ve had no problems with this method. Perhaps, I’m wasting my time with all these slow temperature changes, but I don’t want to damage anything and this just seems like a reasonable precaution to me.
I hang the frog from the top rack with a wire.
The next morning the parts go back out to the shop. Look how much the paint has shrunk! You can clearly read all the text cast into the bed and the corners (like where the sides meet the bed) have that nice curvy, soft, wet look of japanning. It looks more dipped and coated than painted.
So, now it is all painted, but I just managed to get a bunch of paint in places where I don’t want it. It’s time to go back to the granite slab for a second round of fettling. Don’t worry, this one goes way quicker than the first time, as all I have to do is remove the paint. I started with the frog.
Sanding the edges of the plane takes the longest time of all the things in this step. The paint really has gotten quite hard after baking. I sand up to 220 grit and the cast iron takes on a really nice soft satin look.
The sides of the plane got a fair bit of overspray, but this comes off very quickly as I had already flattened the sides earlier.
The shim that I made in the previous post goes back onto the plane bed, so that I can clean off the paint from the frog mounting lugs.
To remove the paint from the small flats that sit right behind the mouth opening (where the front feet of the frog sit), I use a scalpel. I scratch at the paint in a crosshatch pattern until I can chip it away.
With all that done, I can finally re-install some of the hardware that I cleaned a polished in the first post. Before installing any screws, I put a couple of drops of oil into each hole. I don’t want any internal rusting on the threads.
The frog goes back into the body before final lapping of the sole.
I spoke about this in the previous post, but it is important to re-install and tighten down the frog before the final flattening. Tightening the bolts can cause the body casting to flex slightly and you want the sole to be flat “in use” not disassembled. It wouldn’t make much sense to perfectly flatten the sole without any hardware attached, and then attach the hardware and throw things back out of flat.
Since I had done the majority of the fettling before painting, this went very quickly. Once the sole was flat, I removed the frog from the bed and wiped away any sandpaper grit or metal dust. I then wiped everything down with a good coat of Jojoba oil and reinstalled the frog.
So, that’s the bulk of the plane done. In the next post, I will address the cutting iron and chip breaker, and will strip and refinish the wooden knob and tote. And of course, I’ll have a whole bunch of photos of the finished plane.
– Jonathan White
When I got home tonight the front step was piled high with packages. I had 2 and my wife got 4. I knew I had two more coming but not today. It feels like Christmas already and Halloween is still a month away.
|gotta love LN customer service|
|now it's complete - I think it's a better set up then the original one|
|my 4 forstner bits|
|6" x 3/8" precision shaft|
|everything fits onto it|
|walnut miller dowels from Lee Valley|
|finally got one|
|I sure hope this works as advertised|
|from Hyperkitten tools|
|new on the left and older on the right|
|another button on the other side|
|the chucks are different|
|the new drill chuck is spring loaded|
|the older is a screw type chuck|
|9/16" OD washers|
|drilling for the miller dowels|
|after the rails are glued|
|had to use this|
|chopping the first mortise|
|barely a 1/4"|
|down to depth - 3 frog hairs deeper than 3/8"|
|ready to go for tomorrow|
|for you Frank|
|I couldn't do it this way|
What does the zero indicate in the US highway route numbers(Rte 20 etc)?
answer - that it is a coast to coast highway
PS Read the instructions on the box cover on how to open the magazine holding the bits.
After hollowing out the maple back, carving spruce is sinfully fun. At this point, one can do amazing slices.
Nastiness will return while trimming the f-holes, with a knife, across hard-soft-hard-soft-hard-soft, but for now, the living is easy.
A Veneer Hook, Flyswatter, and Air Filter Problems
Sometimes we make silly things in our shops. I often experiment with new techniques using little practice projects. Often I just need a break from a more involved project to make something small. But anytime I make something I aim to hone a skill or take a first step into a new one. And that is what is happening this week in my shop. I built a flyswatter, mainly as a joke, but then as a fun opportunity do some riving, drawknife work, fretwork, and veneer work. Oh yeah and I had a lot of fun making it!
Finally, I need some advice from y’all on what could be wrong with my air filter. I need to get it sorted out quickly as my shop definitely won’t pass a white glove test with all this fine dust building up on stuff…and the Queen is due for dinner soon!
Just a reminder, I will be giving away 2 Bad Axe saws and a bench hook set at the end of this month. Anyone who joins Apprenticeship at The Hand Tool School before October 1st (and any currently enrolled in the program) will be eligible to win one of the saws.
Today was fit up day. The good news is that everything seemed to fit pretty well. Assembly required only a little gentle tapping. The rear seat rail is of white oak. Reason being? It was laying under the lathe.
The rear of the crest rail is straightforward. Piercings are “heavily” beveled. The “flower” at the top is developed on the back. A closer look at the balusters will show a lamb’s tongue on the lower pommel. I’d like to say that this was a critical design consideration. But the truth is that I inadvertently bumped the pommel with the tip of a skew as I was moving the tool rest. Lesson: don’t move the tool rest while the stock is turning. Lesson: Turn an accident into a design detail….
Tomorrow starts the front assembly. Whew, this fast paced production is wearing me out!
This is an excerpt from “With the Grain: A Craftsman’s Guide to Understanding Wood” by Christian Becksvoort.
A commonly encountered misconception is that wood breathes. As we know, heartwood is composed entirely of dead cells, while sapwood has some living cells, which die after the wood is cut. Nonetheless, wood is an organic substance that by its nature responds to climatic changes. Moisture is absorbed or given off as the seasons dictate.
When the relative humidity rises, the wood fibers absorb moisture that penetrates from the outside and causes the wood to swell. As the humidity decreases, excess moisture is given off by the fibers to be reabsorbed by the surrounding air. Wood is constantly trying to maintain a balance between its moisture content and that of the surrounding environment. This balance is called the equilibrium moisture content (EMC). Simply expressed, it is the amount of moisture present in wood at a given temperature and relative humidity over a period of time (Fig. 4-9).
Relative humidity is expressed as a percentage of the amount of moisture that the air is capable of holding at a given temperature. Warm air can hold more water vapor than cold air. For instance, at 86°F (30°C) and 100 percent relative humidity can hold five times as much water vapor as air at 43°F (6°C) and 100 percent relative humidity. Hence, it is a good idea for a well-equipped wood shop to have a thermometer and hygrometer.
Climatic conditions. Generally speaking, very little drying of lumber is possible during the winter, particularly in those areas where the temperature remains below freezing. Moisture close to the surface can evaporate by the process of sublimation, whereby the water goes from a solid state (ice) directly to a gaseous state (vapor) without becoming a liquid. In areas where winter temperatures are relatively mild, some drying will occur, as long as rainfall and humidity are not excessive. Drying rates are variable and often very localized. The location of the drying pile and even its orientation to the sun and prevailing wind all influence the rate of evaporation.
Species. The wood species makes quite a difference when it comes to length of drying time. Specific gravity is a fairly good general indicator of drying rate. The lower the specific gravity, the faster the drying time. The softwoods and lighter species of hardwoods dry faster under favorable conditions. The percentage of sapwood and heartwood also plays a part. For example, sugar maple dries faster than Northern red oak with roughly the same specific gravity, but sugar maple has more sapwood. Figure 4-11 lists the approximate air- drying times of some native woods.
Thickness. The old rule of thumb “one year of drying for each inch of thickness” has no basis in fact. First, it does not take species into account. Second, drying time is a function of the square of the thickness. This means that 8/4, or 2″ (5 cm) stock takes four times as long as 4/4, or 1″ (2.5 cm) stock. In fact, for some species the drying time is even longer than the square of the thickness. This is one reason (along with the differential between radial and tangential shrinkage, described in Chapter 5) why it is next to impossible to dry entire logs without serious cracking or checking.
Grain orientation. Quartersawn wood is slower to dry than plain-sawn wood. The ray cells aid in drying, and although they appear more prominent on quartersawn wood, not nearly as many are exposed on the face of the board.
Pile construction and foundation. The actual method of stacking the wood has a lot to do with the drying rate. Adequate space left around each board aids in drying. Many smaller piles dry faster than one large pile. The pile foundation should be well off the ground to allow for free air movement underneath. Weeds and debris should not obstruct the air flow. Finally, the ground should be well drained, with no standing water.
— Meghan Bates
Filed under: Uncategorized
This week I’m working on a small Arts & Crafts project coming out in a week or two. One of the joints used in the project is what I call an egg-crate joint as shown in the opening photo. Some woodworkers call this joint a half-lap because you’re slipping half of each board together. Years ago I called a ship-lap joint a half-lap for the same reason. Regardless of what you call this slipped-together connection, I thought I’d share how I tweak the fit when using a table saw.
Editor’s note: Last month we asked Kara Gebhart Uhl to help us with editorial tasks at Lost Art Press. During the last decade, John and I have taken on book projects that are more and more ambitious. And in the next 12 months we’ll be announcing several additional ambitious projects that will take lots of brainpower and red ink.
After months of agonizing over how to manage these projects and keep our sanity, I read a blog entry that struck me like an electric shock. One of my former editorial employees, Kara, was lamenting/celebrating the fact that her kids were all going to be in school during the day.
I sent her an immediate email. She knows woodworking. She knows our editing style. She can already read my mind. And no one – no one – is as organized and on time as Kara.
She agreed to help us out about 10 hours a week and has already started chewing up our backlog of editing – the next Charles Hayward volume is now two months ahead of schedule.
As you’ll see below, Kara is crazy overqualified to work with us, but we hope to treat her well and hang onto her for many years to come.
Fifteen years ago Chris Schwarz hired me as an assistant editor at Popular Woodworking Magazine. I had a magazine journalism degree, and I was hired for my writing and editing skills. My only woodworking skills at the time involved a turned lamp I made in junior high shop class.
Chris served as a mentor, helping me improve my writing and editing, while also teaching me the art of woodworking. I took classes, including a week-long class with Lonnie Bird to build a Shaker end table, and a chairmaking class with Don Weber. Several other pieces see daily use in my home, including a knockdown Arts & Crafts bookcase.
But I never truly fell in love with the physical aspects of woodworking. I did, however, fall in love with the idea of woodworking and, more importantly, the folks who did it. My absolute favorite pieces to write for Popular Woodworking Magazine was a series of articles called Great Woodshops. I’d spend a day in John Wilson’s The Home Shop or in Brian Boggs’s “laboratory,” and I’d simply look and listen, and then retell.
I served as associate and managing editor at Popular Woodworking Magazine, and helped launch Woodworking Magazine. But eventually my love of the craft of writing led me to Writer’s Digest magazine, which was two floors up in the same building.
My daughter, Sophie, was born in 2008. My twin boys were born in 2010. During this time, I quit my job at Writer’s Digest magazine, and went about the daily tasks of raising three young children. We moved into a foursquare built in 1901 in Fort Thomas, Ky., right across the river from Cincinnati.
I worked as a freelance writer and editor, doing the occasional final binder reads for both Popular Woodworking Magazine and Writer’s Digest. I maintained a column at Writer’s Digest, wrote ads, edited Writer’s Market books, and wrote profiles about interesting people for our small city’s blog, http://www.fortthomasmatters.com.
I also wrote about parenting on my personal blog, http://www.pleiadesbee.com, and my essays were picked up by TIME: Healthland, The New York Times Motherlode (now called Well Family) and The Huffington Post. It was in the comment sections of those blogs that I developed a thick skin.
I still maintain my freelance workload, all the while working toward my dream of publishing a picture book. I’m represented by Jordy Albert of The Booker Albert Agency and I currently have two out on submission. As Sylvia Plath once said, “I love my rejection slips. They show me I try.”
After eight years of being home with my children, working during naps, nights and weekends, my days have changed. In August all three of my children went back to school, full day. What once were a few precious hours here and there has turned into six solid hours at home. Chris, aware of this life change, emailed me, asking if I was interested in helping out.
And so, in many ways, I feel like I’ve come back full circle. I’m once again working with my former mentor, and serving a community of craftspeople who I’ve grown to admire greatly over the years, people who believe in the beauty of working with one’s hands, building objects designed to last longer than themselves. I’m happy to be here.
— Kara Gebhart Uhl
Filed under: Uncategorized
Generally speaking, I like tools: power tools, hand tools, woodworking tools, farm tools. Tools. Also generally speaking, I like old things. I’m no Luddite (I’m very fond of Netflix) but am much more likely to smile over a thrift store treasure than a new iPhone. Be it a hat, lamp or hardback, old things have an ontological resonance that gets my neurons firing. Picturing all the sets of hands holding […]
The post Remove Rust from an Old Hand Plane with Citric Acid appeared first on Popular Woodworking Magazine.
Every issue of M&T will have an in depth analysis of a particular period piece. In the last issue, we looked at a Federal Boston secretary. (Yes, the ebook is still in the works.) The objective with this kind of piece is to provide numerous up close and personal photographs of not only the pretty show surface, but also the guts of the thing. This is the stuff museums don’t typically publish for people and it’s exactly the kind of stuff that woodworkers want to see.
For Issue Two, I chose this mid to late 1700s New England table that I purchased at an auction earlier this year. I selected this piece because it’s not rare or unique in at all. This form and construction is typical and as such serves as a wonderful teaching tool for those that want to reverse engineer the pre-industrial process. By carefully disassembling a few of the joints, this piece gives us a unique opportunity to explore the mindset of an 18th century cabinetmaker.
This photo essay focuses on the tool marks that tell the story here with concise commentary pointing out some of the methods of the original artisan. In this piece, you’ll see not only how the drop leaf is constructed, but also the secondary surfaces and workmanlike solutions that are relatively standard features of pre-industrial work.
Stay tuned for more contents to be found in the upcoming Issue Two.
After realising that it was 22 years ago I had last done any brazing/welding of cast iron, I decided to read up a bit on the subject.
1) Use an flame with oxygen surplus.
2) Preheat the parts to 350 - 400 dgC.
And off course the usual stuff about chamfering and how to hold the flame (15-30 degree angle).
I mounted two pieces of angle bar in a vise on the deck. One would hopefully keep the sole falt, and the other should keep the plane aligned sideways.
A fairly important trick for cast iron is to first use a flame (oxygen surplus) directly on the crack, to burn away any carbon deposits.
After this I did my best to preheat evenly to 400 dgC. I then started brazing with a special filler material intended for cast iron. The biggest challenge was that I couldn't flip the plane on the side to do the major parts of the crack, and this particular type of filler works best if applied on a horizontal piece.
I did the best I could, and at a point I decided that I couldn't do much more.
The next suggestion from the welding handbook was to let the item cool slowly packed in dry sand or in some insulation material. I elegantly skipped that part and just reduced the intensity of the flame and heated a bit on the plane now and then till I reached 150 dgC.
After that I just let it cool down.
Once cold I rinsed it off in water and took it to the workshop.
The sole had a cup in the middle, so I flattened it using a file and later some emery paper. It still has a small area behind the mouth where it is possible to slip a piece of paper under. But I think it might be OK despite that. If not I'll just flatten it some more later.
Sideways it was also a bit off, but it was mostly on the forward most part of the plane. I flattened until I could see that the nicker was in line with the aft part of the plane, and then I stopped. I have never used the plane with the blade in the forward position, and I doubt I ever will, so no need to fuss to much over it.
The conclusions to the project:
By using the cast iron filler instead of the bronze filler, the repair job is a little bit more hidden, and a bit stronger.
The structured original paint of the plane is destroyed. And the entire plane needs to be washed again because it makes your hands dirty when you try to hold it.
It is possible to repair a broken cast iron plane. BUT it is better if you don't drop it in the first place!
In this episode of 360 with 360WoodWorking, the 360 guys discuss how there are few, if any, simple answers to woodworking questions.
Join the guys twice each week for six lively minutes of discussion on everything from tools to techniques to wood selection (and more). Chuck & Glen, and sometimes a surprise guest, all have their own opinions. Sometimes they agree and sometimes they don’t, but the conversation is always information packed and lots of fun.
|the tag says it all|
|my daily take to work Thermos|
|this bottom is a press fit|
|how I fixed it|
|fixing the bevels|
|another spot to address|
|two swipes of the spokeshave|
|I'm happy with the edges|
|happy with the tops too|
|shining the letters|
|the outside done with the Clickspring techniques I saw|
|saved myself 6 bucks|
|getting ready for tomorrow|
|workbench rail to post connection|
|used the same setup on the sharpening bench|
Who was Roy J Plunkett?
answer - an american chemist you discovered polytetrafluoroethylene by accident in 1938 - PTFE aka Teflon
Part 2 – Fettling the Body and Frog
This is the second post in a four-part series in which I show all the steps that I took to restore an English Stanley No. 4½ Jumbo Smoothing Plane. You can read the earlier post here:
I ended the previous post with the plane completely disassembled and all the parts having been cleaned and even polished where necessary. The next part of the process is to fettle the plane. This involves flattening the sole and the sides, flattening the face of the frog, and checking the mating surfaces where the frog mounts onto the body casting. I’m going to do this twice. The first fettling is the hardest one and requires the most elbow grease. It is done before the parts are painted. After painting, the parts are fettled one more time very lightly to remove overspray and for final finish.
To flatten parts, I use a granite reference slab and self adhesive sandpaper. Mine is a Grizzly Reference Slab that I bought at the Grizzly showroom in Bellingham a few years ago. Luckily I was able to pick it up in person, as shipping would have been ridiculously expensive. This thing weighs 150 pounds!!! You’d never think so to look at it, but man is it heavy. I hate having to move it, so it has become a more or less permanent fixture at my sharpening area.
For sandpaper, I like the Klingspor brand. I buy the 2 ¾ wide rolls and get them from EdenSaw Hardwoods in Port Townsend. You can also get them from WoodworkingShop.com where they are cheaper, but you have to pay shipping and wait for the small mail.
Since I’m aiming for a flat surface, I stick the paper down using a pressure roller. It needs to be stuck close to the edge as you can only flatten on half of the frog face at a time. I suppose you could knock out the pins holding the lateral adjuster and the depth wishbone, but then they would have to be re-peened in place later. This would likely chip the new paint. Instead, I throw the lateral adjuster all the way over to one side and then flatten the opposite side on the slab. I then switch sides and repeat. Lastly, I push the whole frog back and forth on the slab, advancing in as far as the depth pin.
In the US, with the beginning of the Type 16 planes, Stanley went to a raised rib style frog as seen above. Previously the whole frog had one flat surface with no recessed (black painted) areas. The older style frog is regarded (arguably) and the better frog, and I tend to agree. In the older style, the entire face of the frog is in contact with the cutting iron, providing better support. One good thing that can me said about the newer style is that they are easier to flatten. As you are only sanding on the raised metal ribs, very little metal has to be removed.
The bottom of the frog also has to be trued up. Go easy here! You don’t want to change the geometry of the mating surfaces as you could easily screw up the plane. I used slow, even strokes with a firm downward pressure on the frog.
All of these areas will get touched up one more time later in the process after the painting is done. But for now, the frog is finished. Time to address the body.
The sole of the plane was not in bad shape. It looked ugly, but a few passes on the sandpaper revealed it to be pretty flat. The important thing here is that the plane be flat down the sides, in the front and at the back, and right across the front of the mouth opening. Any low spots in the middle of the front or the middle of the rear, will not affect the cutting.
I stopped here:
There was no need to continue lapping the bottom until all the lows were removed. Once the body is painted I will repeat this process.
This is probably a good time to point out something else that is rather important. You will notice that I am lapping the sole here without the frog installed. That’s fine for now, but the final lapping will need to be done with the frog in the plane. The act of tightening the bolts that attach the frog to the bed can cause the sole to flex a little, so final lapping will best be done after the parts are painted and the frog re-installed.
Once happy with the sole, I moved on to the sides.
110 images and yet I find there is still a step that I forgot to take a picture of. The next thing I did is to take a piece of 120 grit paper and sand all the edges of the plane. The leading edge, the tailing edge, and the top edges of the sides. I’ve seen some restorations where these edges get painted and left that way, but I think they look great once sanded up to about 220 grit. They take on a nice satin appearance when done right.
After the edges were done, I turned my attention to the frog mounting lugs. These parts are cast into the bed of the plane body and are where the bed mates with the bottom of the frog. If these parts are uneven and do not mate flatly with the frog, the frog will rock and performance of the plane will be awful. Sanding these lugs by hand would tend to round them over and ruin the mating surface. I needed to create a jig that will allow me to lightly sand them but keep them dead flat.
I tape a piece of masonite to the plane body and keep adding layers of masking tape to build up this shim until it is the same height as the top of the lugs.
I tried to adjust the focus to show you what I’m lining up.
You can also use a piece of flat stock to test the setup.
A file would be too aggressive here. I just want a very light sanding to clean and flatten the top of the mounting lugs. I went to the firewood pile and picked out a scrap of madrone left over from my chisel handle projects. I ran one face over the jointer to flatten it and then stuck a piece of self adhesive sandpaper to it.
Don’t over do this. This process will be repeated one more time after the body is painted.
The last areas to touch up are the small flats right behind the mouth opening. These are very hard to get to. A milling machine would do the trick, but my shop is too stuffed with woodworking machines to ever think of adding metalworking tools. Instead, I stuck some sandpaper on the end of a stick and sanded the area manually.
As I sit here writing this, a lightbulb just went on. The thought occurs to me that I could take a pice of dowel rod (⅜” or perhaps ½”) and square up one end at the shooting board. I could then affix some sandpaper to the end and mount the dowel in the drill press. Light downward pressure on the handle would create an overlapping circle/swirl pattern. But with a light touch, and a well squared up table, might just do the trick. I will have to experiment with this next time I restore a plane.
In any case, this brings me to the end of this installment. All of the parts are fitting together beautifully and are ready for paint. As my painting process is rather involved, I will save that for the next post.
– Jonathan White
Here’s a recap of my first day at Woodworking In America 2016 — held at the Northern Kentucky Convention in Covington Kentucky which is part of the greater Cincinnati Ohio area.Greetings from Popular Woodworking in America 2016
This was my first time attending this conference and other than a nightmare of a time getting there by plane from NH (Thursday night flight cancelled, the second set of flights Friday at the crack of dawn, missing the connection due to ground staff incompetence and fighting to get on another flight later in the day) and missing the 2/3 of the day’s lectures I still had a very nice first day watching Freddy Roman’s presentation, exploring the brew and browse event, meeting a ton of friends old and new and meeting several online friends in person. I also had a great dinner with a great bunch of folks — Zach Dillinger, Mary May, George Walker and many others.
Click on any of the images below to click through the images as a slideshow. (if you are viewing this post in an email browser, please click on the post title above to view the post on the website itself)
Up next is a post about the second two days of the conference. I had a great time and hope I can attend it again in 2017.
Filed under: featured, Popular Woodworking Tagged: Brew and Browse, Cincinnati, Cincinnati Ohio, featured, Freddy Roman, Ohio, Popular Woodworking, Popular Woodworking In America, WIA, WIA2016
We are often asked if our blades will fit in a Lie-Nielsen plane. The answer is… usually. Hock blades will drop in to many Lie-Nielsen bench planes but there can be a problem with the breaker fit. And, no, Hock breakers don’t fit Lie-Nielsen bench planes so the solution is a bit more complicated than that.
Breakers are part of the plane while blades are temporary visitors. A blade will move a couple inches through the plane over the course of its life while a breaker will move back and forth a mere fraction of an inch while adjusting the depth-of-cut. Therefore, the distance from the sharp end of the breaker to the small rectangular slot is critical. And the Lie-Nielsen breakers’ hole pattern does not match the Stanley’s that Hock breakers are designed to replace.
So, what’s the problem? Hock blades are 3/32″ (.094″) thick while Lie-Nielsen’s are 1/8″ (.125″), 9/64″ (.140″), or 11/64″ (.170″). When you install a Hock blade into a Lie-Nielsen plane the thinner blade moves the breaker down lower onto the adjuster lever (the yellow thing in the cut-away photo). That lever is tapered so it’s not uncommon for the breaker to jam partway onto it, making it inoperative.
However, and this is the “a bit more complicated” part, many times there is no problem and the Hock blade will simply drop in and require no modification. A frog adjustment may be needed as the thinner blade will make for a wider mouth and you may wish to close it a bit by moving the frog forward. But, it the breaker jams down onto the adjuster lever, read on.
Okay, what to do? There is still considerable demand for O1 blades, which Lie-Nielsen no longer offers. (O1 still outsells A2 here at Hock Tools, BTW.) If you want a Hock Tools O1 blade for your Lie-Nielsen plane, and encounter the fitment problem described above, you could file the adjuster lever to allow the breaker to seat properly, or you could file the little rectangular slot just a little to achieve the same effect. I strongly recommend the latter course of action because if you ever wanted to return your plane to “stock” condition, you’d only have to replace the breaker (and maybe not even that) to do so. Your LN plane will hold its value forever and if you (or your estate) ever wanted to sell it that value will be higher if the adjuster lever is unmodified.
Use a file small enough to get into that little slot and file it at an angle so that it tapers up from the underside to allow it to fit over the adjuster lever. You shouldn’t have to remove much metal. File slowly and carefully and check the fit often.
Linda and I have become good friends with the Lie-Nielsen gang over the years. They often recommend us to their customers who ask for O1 blades. And I had Deneb vet this post in case he had anything to add. We all want our customers to have the best tools possible and are happy to work together to that end.
With all of my stock dimensioned, the first step is plowing the grooves for the panels. As I have shown in the past I used a clamp to steady each board and used a Veritas plow plane to make the grooves. It only took a couple of hours to get them all done and I had very little trouble. I do like the upgraded plow plane and if you haven’t let Veritas make the change I’d go ahead. Although I had little trouble with loosening set, it’s nice to have some extremely reassurance.